A year ago today, Wake Forest made a baffling move.
It hired Jeff Bzdelik to coach its basketball team. Wake Forest athletic director Ron Wellman fired Dino Gaudio, who had finished 22-10 in the ultra-tough Atlantic Coast Conference in his only three seasons as coach. Wellman then hired Bzdelik, who had finished 10-38 in the Big 12 during the same stretch.
In life, there is strange. And then there is really strange. The Bzdelik decision ranks in the really strange category.
Yes, I know Bzdelik led Air Force Academy to 50 victories overall and 22 victories in the Mountain West in two seasons from 2005 to 2007.
Here’s something else I know:
In the four seasons since then – three at Colorado and one at Wake Forest – Bzdelik has won 44 games overall and – get this – only 11 in conference.
To be fair, Bzdelik has shown great promise as a coach.
An NBA coach, that is.
He performed a masterful job of pushing the Nuggets to the playoffs in 2003-2004. The NBA is where Bzdelik is most comfortable. The NBA is where he belongs.
His college credentials are blurred, in his favor, by his time at Air Force, where he inherited a deep, experienced, hungry team. It was ready made for a journey to the NCAA tournament.
In the six seasons Bzdelik coached a college team not known as the Air Force Academy, he has compiled six losing seasons.
That, my friends, is consistency.
Here’s CBS Sports look at the 10 most endangered college basketball coaches, and, yes, Bzdelik is already on the list. (Thanks to The Gazette’s Frank Schwab for letting me know about this list.)